Friday, May 22, 2015

Once Upon a Midnight Dreary...

 Oooo....a spooky Caspian Tern! 

MWAHAHA!!! Well, not really. More of a midmorn dreary... We managed to pick the drizzle days for our visits to Magee Marsh and surrounding bird havens during the Biggest Week in American Birding. But even a dreary day out there can be a good day! Just remember not to aim your camera lens up...I think the lens hood can hold about a quart of water.

I've heard quite a few comments about the sparse feathered friends this year along the boardwalk. The weather hasn't been the greatest for the birders, but it seems to have pushed the migrants across Lake Erie much faster than usual. The regular number of species have been spotted in dribbles throughout the area, just not the "dripping from the trees" quantities that folks have become enamored with. Even the number of birders crowding the area seemed to be down...maybe they headed across the lake too!

 When in doubt(and wet!) go to the driving tour at Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge!

 The Doodles is always happy when she's birding at Magee!
(Check out the new Black Swamp hats!)

 Speaking of old coots...here's a feathered American Coot!

 When this Blue-winged Teal realized I was looking at him, he decided to leave.
Very camera shy...

 This Baltimore Oriole was trying to check out my new hat...

 The only shot I managed of a Black-and-white Warbly...at least it was from behind!

 A very big show off!
Chestnut-sided Warblies LOVE to get their pictures taken...
 
 The largest number of Gray Catbirds ever!
Everything that caught our eyes moving in the scrub turned out to be one of these.


 You can always count on a Great Blue Heron to be around somewhere.

 Hmmm...gotta love ID'ing those Thrushes!
I think I shall call you...Kermit the Hermit!

 Buffy eye ring? Check.
You must be Mr. Swainson.

 "Well looky up there!"

 "Ha! We made them look up!"
Least Terns have the least sense of humor.

 Sometimes I like to spy on Yellowlegs!
Shhhh....

 Lincoln's Sparrows are not at all good at hiding...

 Okay kids! It's another exciting game of find the Warbly!
A whole drizzly day of "almost got'ems."
By the way, that's a Magnolia Warbly ducking out of the rain.

 Muskrats don't care about the weather.
(Those greens made The Doodles hungry for lunch...)

 Whose butt is this?
That's a very distinctive pattern!

 Pied-billed Grebes always seem a bit lost looking...
"Hmmm...was it left or right at the third reed?"

 "Does this tree make my butt look big?"
Um, yes.

 As you can tell, both this Red-winged Blackbird and I spent the day looking down.
You never know what you might find!

 Oops...better look up!
There's a Rose-breasted Grosbeak up there!

 That fuzzy blob across the marsh at Metzger was a Sandhill Crane.
We don't see those too often!

 I guess I picked a bad place to stop the car.
The Doodles wasn't pleased when she opened the door.
(I'm STILL laughing!)

 I think I'll have to wait a while to hear this Trumpeter Swan trumpet.
(That does not look comfortable...)

 You don't often get to see a Warbling Vireo from above!

 Love those White-throated Sparrows and their little whistles!

 Yes there were a few warblies to see.
LOTS of Yellow Warblies!

  Poor Common Grackles, ignored by many, loved by so few.
I like to watch them "grack!"

 You gotta love those "butter butts!"...um...Yellow-rumped Warblies.

Coming Soon!!
Taking that first big step!

My newly retired brother Phil and his first birding adventure to Magee!
(He is now brainwashed and an official birder!)